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Elbow Testing
BVA/KC Elbow Dysplasia Scheme
The current BVA/KC scoring scheme for elbow dysplasia (ED) was launched in 1998. Dysplasia means abnormal development, and the degree of elbow dysplasia present is indicated by a grade assigned to each elbow on a scale of 0 to 3 (0 being the best and 3 being the most severe). Only the highest grade of the two elbows is taken as the elbow grade for that dog. The minimum age for elbow grading is one year, and each dog is only ever graded once under the scheme. Advice to breeders is wherever possible to use only those dogs with grades of 0 or 1 for breeding.

Which breeds are screened under the Scheme?
Any breed may be screened under the scheme, but there are a number of breeds which have been shown to have a higher incidence of elbow dysplasia, which includes Basset Hounds.

How do I get my dog graded under the Scheme?
Owners should contact their veterinary surgeon and arrange an appointment for their dog to be radiographed (x-rayed). The radiographs will usually be taken under anaesthesia or heavy sedation so the dog may have to be left at the veterinary practice. Elbow radiographs can be taken at the same time as those for the CHS Hip Dysplasia Scheme. When taking the dog for its radiographs owners should remember the following.

1: The dog must be at least one year old, but there is no upper age limit.
2:  The dog’s KC registration certificate and any related transfer certificates must be available    so that the appropriate details can be printed on the radiographs.
3:  Microchip/tattoo numbers must also be printed on the radiographs.
4:   The owner should sign the declaration (first part) of the certificate, to verify the details are correct and grant permission for the use of the results.

Once the radiographs are taken, the veterinary surgeon fills out the appropriate section of the form and submits both the radiographs and the form to the CHS. The results and the radiographs are normally returned to the veterinary surgeon within three weeks with a certificate for the owner and a copy for the veterinary surgeon. Once a grade has been given for a dog, the radiograph cannot be resubmitted; however, owners have the right to an appeal, which takes the form of a re-appraisal of the original radiographs. A letter of appeal must be made within 45 days of the date of the original certificate. The whole procedure from initial appointment to receiving the grades is handled through the veterinary surgeon.
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